Beginning with a talk by Opera Singer Patricia Steiner
ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS, N.J. –Sony Pictures Classics will be holding the New Jersey premiere of their newest film, Maria by Callas: In Her Own Words at Atlantic Cinemas in Atlantic Highlands on Sunday, September 16th –, at 8:30 pm with all ticket sales to benefit FilmOneFest a project of the Atlantic Highlands Arts Council (AHAC).
The Maria Callas Movie premiere will also include a free question & answer session with noted New York Met opera singer, Patricia Steiner. The Q&A is included with each ticket and will begin at 7:00 pm at the Atlantic Highlands Arts Council Gallery with wine and cheese and Ms. Steiner’s talk. Tickets are $20 per person, student tickets $10 per person. Tickets can be purchased at www.filmonefest.org
Sony Pictures Classics release of director Tom Volf’s documentary about the famous diva took nearly five year to complete. The documentary extensive research, writing and exclusive never-before-seen footage, photographs, private live recordings, letters, rare behind-the scenes archival footage and in a surprise discovery, Callas’ rare Super-8 home movies– all delivering a rare portrait of the opera legend.
The movie marks Volf’s debut film and he said “I couldn’t dream of a better partner than Sony Pictures Classics to bring ‘Maria by Callas’ to audiences. Thanks to Sony Pictures Classics, many people will get to discover — or rediscover — the great artist and the woman behind the legend as she has never been seen or heard before.”
This year marks the 40th anniversary since Callas’ death and Hollywood is currently producing a number of projects based on the soprano’s life including one project slated to star Meryl Streep. Meanwhile, Warner Classics is releasing a new box set with all of Callas’ live recordings.
Born in New York City and raised by a cold and distant mother, Callas received her musical schooling in Greece. Forced to deal with wartime poverty and health issues that left her nearly blind onstage, she endured numerous struggles and scandal over the course of her career. She turned herself from a heavy woman into a svelte and glamorous one after a mid-career weight loss, which might have contributed to the premature end of her career.
The press tended to focus on her temperamental behavior, her supposed rivalry with another opera diva and her love affair with Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis. And while her off-stage life and personal tragedy often overshadow Callas-the-artist, her artistic achievements were so great that legendary composer Leonard Bernstein called her, “the Bible of opera” and her influence so enduring that, the Opera News wrote not long ago, “Thirty years after Callas’ death, she’s still the definition of the diva as artist—and still one of classical music’s best-selling vocalists.”
The evening’s speaker, Patricia Steiner – a Mezzo-Soprano, a member of the Metropolitan Opera Chorus since 1991, will speak to the struggles and competitiveness of the world of Opera. Ms. Steiner has appeared onstage at the Met and on tour in Japan, Spain and Germany in concert at Carnegie Hall. She has also performed with the Met on television and in the Met Live in HD performances, broadcast in movie theaters worldwide. She has also soloist with other companies throughout the US such as Chicago Lyric Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera and Sarasota Opera. She has been a recitalist in the US, France, Poland and South Africa. As a member of the Metropolitan Opera Chorus since 1991, Patricia has appeared onstage at the Met and on tour in Japan, Spain and Germany, and in concert at Carnegie Hall. She has also performed with the Met on television and in the Met Live in HD performances, broadcast in movie theaters worldwide. She has performed numerous solos with the Met and has been a soloist and chorister through the years with other companies throughout the US such as Chicago Lyric Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera and Sarasota Opera. She has been a recitalist in the US, France, Poland and South Africa. A graduate of Northwestern University, Patricia enjoys horses and the great outdoors and recently was honored to spend time at the 5cees Orphanage in Johannesburg, South Africa.